Red Sox Call Up Jeter Downs; Top Prospect Received in Mookie Betts Trade with Dodgers

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVJune 20, 2022

Worcester, MA - April 27: Red Sox Jeter Downs stretches in pregame warmups. The Worcester Red Sox played Buffalo Bisons at Polar Park in Worcester, MA on April 27, 2022.(Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Jeter Downs is finally set for his MLB debut.

The Boston Red Sox called up the top middle infield prospect Monday and designated pitcher James Norwood for assignment. Downs was called up after the Red Sox were forced to put Kike Hernandez (hip) and Christian Arroyo (illness) on the injured list.

Ranked as the fifth-best prospect in the Red Sox organization, Downs was acquired as part of Boston's trade of Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 23-year-old has struggled to live up to the hype, hitting just .191/.272/.333 with 14 home runs and 39 runs batted in last season and then posting a slash line of .180/.297/.397 through 53 games this season.

Those numbers have caused Downs to drop out of MLB's top 100 prospects after being ranked No. 44 at the time of the trade. At one point, Downs was the No. 7 prospect in all of baseball.

Given his continued inability to hit for average, it's likely that Downs won't be long for the majors. Downs will almost certainly head back to Triple-A once Hernandez and Arroyo are ready to return, barring an unforeseen breakout.